Online learning doesn’t mean we can do more work

Jackie Lugo

From the start of working from home, there was this notion that because we weren’t commuting or physically present, we would be able to save copious amounts of time and be able to get more work done. I learned that this was not the case, and working from home proved to be extremely difficult. Instead of being more relaxed, I was more stressed. I wasn’t getting any work done, I rarely got out of bed and I was constantly on edge. I thought that I would be able to be more productive from home.  

There are several factors at play that prevent us from working. Things such as our environment, exhaustion and stress prevent us from being able to focus and get work done. Just because we’re working from home doesn’t mean we’re able to get more work done. The constant stress of an ongoing pandemic is affecting all of us. It’s been hard to get any work done with the ongoing anxiety of this crisis.

Psychology freshman Mackenzie Daigle discussed her struggles with online classes.

“Things that wouldn’t have taken me very long are taking me very long to complete,” Daigle said. 

Now that classes are completed at a more self-paced rhythm, it's become increasingly arduous to find motivation. I have found myself taking an entire day to complete one lecture for my classes. Then I fall behind. It’s a novel problem to me, as I would just attend lectures for an hour and a half continuously, and there was no pause button. 

Our homes weren’t intended to be a workspace, but now that we are forced to do work from home, it’s hard to stay focused in a place that provides a lot of distraction. The stress of the ongoing pandemic constantly tries to nab our attention, and it’s difficult to concentrate.

Bethany Luna, a sociology and Mexican American and Latina/o studies junior, talked about her difficulties working from home. 

“Stress has added to my ability to work because I have to do everything on my own,” Luna said. “My boss isn’t able to give me answers or help in person.”

Instructors, along with ourselves, need to realize that our productivity isn’t going to be the same as it was. We are in a crisis where we’ve been forced to convert an environment into a productivity space.

It’s OK that we’re not able to work during this time. I’ve learned being compassionate towards myself during this time is a good practice. Even if you’re not able to get anything done, take a break and try again. Form study groups using group chats to motivate you to study. 

I’ve learned that sticking to a schedule is hard, and I know that I’m not going to do everything on my to-do list. It’s hard to be productive, but it’s important to acknowledge that there’s an ongoing threat to our safety and health. Although school is a priority, it’s OK to forgive not being productive. 

Lugo is an English freshman from Harlingen, Texas.